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Some parents have great difficulties to provide for their children’s basic needs. To protect them, these children are often separated from their parents and placed in foster families. The Foster care service (Accueil Familial) defends their well-being and interests on a daily basis.
The Red Cross has been accompanying children in foster families since 1928 on the initiative of Mrs Aline Mayrisch de Saint-Hubert. The Foster care service, formerly known as Foster placement, has existed since 1992 and is approved by the ,Ministère de l’Education nationale, de l’Enfance et de la Jeunesse’ to provide “psychological, social or educational assistance to families”.
The aim of the Foster care service is to ensure that the child placed in the foster family grows up in a stable environment conducive to his or her development.
Its staff listens to the child and supports him or her in all important decisions. If it is in the child’s interest, the link between the child and the biological family is preserved and promoted.
The Foster care service prepares and selects candidates for foster care on the basis of an elaborate evaluation process. It works in an interdisciplinary way and makes use of different methodological tools such as the systemic approach and the attachment approach.
The foster family is supported in its efforts to develop a solid bond with the child and to give the child a sense of belonging. This bond between foster family and child forms the basis of a stable relationship and becomes the primary factor in the success of foster care. At some point in the child’s life, the relationship developed with the foster family will allow him or her to work on his or her history and, when appropriate, strengthen the bond with his or her biological parents.
The Foster care service offers to accompany the looked-after child, the foster family and the biological family in the context of judicial placement or voluntary foster care.
It organises and proposes, in the interests of the child, the conditions and modalities of the different forms of contact between the children and their biological parents.
The service provides support and advice to the biological family in the development of its parental resources and its efforts to stabilise its personal situation. It assesses with them the possibility of the child coming back to live with them.
The Foster care service defends the interests of the child and is committed to him or her. It takes on the role of intermediary between the two families, both biological and foster.
It offers psychological support to foster children as well as individual and group supervision to their foster parents.
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